With a few simple additions, these glazed roasted carrots taste as vibrant as they look.
By Tux Loerzel
This beautiful dish is the perfect balance of bright vinegary dijon mustard, sweet caramely maple syrup, rich salty butter, fresh woodsy green thyme and parsley, and tender earthy sweet carrots. Since the carrots are roasted not boiled, they are packed with flavor and wonderfully tender with a subtle crispness on the ends and edges. The sauce seems loose initially, but in the oven the butter, maple, and mustard caramelize and thicken and coat the carrots perfectly and give them an elegant autumnal flavor.
I recommend using multiple colors of carrots if you can find them. Not only do they make for a more beautiful, dramatic presentation, but they also offer slight variations in flavor and sweetness. My local grocery store carries mixed bags of yellow, orange, and purple carrots and these days I don’t believe they’re difficult to find in most parts of the country. Standard orange carrots would work just fine though in a pinch.
I like to think that this is one of those gateway dishes that will convert even the most avid cooked carrot, or mustard, hater and guide them on the path toward food love.
- 2 lbs carrots (multiple colors if possible)
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 2 to 3 teaspoons finely chopped fresh thyme leaves
- ¼ cup dark amber (real) maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
- 2 teaspoons whole grain mustard (optional)
- ¼ teaspoon grated nutmeg
- salt and pepper to taste
- 3 to 4 tablespoons chopped flat leaf parsley
- Preheat oven to 400F.
- Wash, dry, and peel carrots and place in a shallow dish long and wide enough to fit them all.
- Add butter and thyme to a small saucepan and heat over a medium flame to melt butter. Continue to warm the butter for 1 to 2 minutes. The butter should take on a green-ish tint from the thyme leaves. Remove from heat and cool for a few minutes. In a small bowl combine maple syrup, mustards, nutmeg, and salt and pepper. Whisk in butter until smooth and well combined.
- Pour the butter/syrup mixture over the carrots and toss to coat. Arrange the carrots on a parchment lined baking sheet, and use a spatula to scrape any remaining butter/syrup mixture over them. You may want to use two sheets of parchment to make sure the whole pan is completely covered. Roast until tender and brown, for about 45 minutes to 1 hour, using tongs to turn each carrot about 30 minutes in. Watching carefully that the sugar in the maple syrup doesn’t burn onto the parchment.
- Top with chopped parsley before serving.